Professor Umar Danbatta, the Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), says the universal service to information and communication technologies (ICTs) by Nigeria’s unserved population dropped from 36.8 million (24.5 per cent) in 2013 to 33.7 million (22.5 per cent) in 2015.
The telecom regulatory boss, who dropped this hint at the ‘Focused Industry Stakeholders’ Forum and Hackathon Award of the Universal Service Provision Fund (USPF) held recently in Lagos, says that the report is based on the Access Gap study using the 150 million population benchmark of Nigeria.
At the forum held with theme ‘Universal Access: Eliminating The Inclusion Barriers’, Danbatta says NCC will play significant role in the facilitation of broadband penetration; improve quality of service; promote ICT innovations and investment opportunities and facilitate strategic collaboration and partnership.
He also spoke on the serious need to look at federal and state policies that are not friendly to the deployment of ICT infrastructure in the country as the current level of the ICT infrastructure in Nigeria has led to limited development.
He added that the Commission plans to issues licences to InfraCos to cover the five remaining geo-political zones in Nigeria including South West, South, South East, North East and North West.
The Universal Service Provision Fund (USPF) was established within the Nigerian Communications Commission by the Federal Government of Nigeria to facilitate the achievement of national policy goals for universal access to Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in rural, un-served and under-served areas in Nigeria.